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Heather du Plessis-Allan: I'm not sure what James Shaw has been doing but it wasn't nailing down a climate plan

Author
Heather du Plessis-Allan,
Publish Date
Mon, 16 May 2022, 4:17pm
(Photo / File)
(Photo / File)

Heather du Plessis-Allan: I'm not sure what James Shaw has been doing but it wasn't nailing down a climate plan

Author
Heather du Plessis-Allan,
Publish Date
Mon, 16 May 2022, 4:17pm

I’m not entirely sure what James Shaw has been doing with his time. 

But whatever it is, it certainly wasn’t spent nailing down a climate plan. 

What he’s released today is very short on detail. Very short. 

This is supposed to be a big day for the Government by the way. 

The PM’s called climate change the nuclear-free moment of our generation. 

Her government had copped it for doing very little about that for five years but this was going to fix all that. 

This plan was so big it would make the economic upheaval of Rogernomics look like “a trial period”. 

It was so complicated, James Shaw had to delay its release by five months to today to finish all the work on it. 

So, it’s fair to say expectations were high. 

In which case this will be a huge disappointment to the climate crowd. 

It’s more notable for what’s missing than what’s actually in it. 

The congestion charge that was expected to be in this announcement isn’t. 

That decision has been delayed until later this year. They need to do some policy work. 

The expected ban on new gas connections to houses is axed. 

So, you can go ahead and add that gas stovetop to your house plans. 

The biggest announcement in this is $569m to pay low-income families, earning below around 90K a year, to scrap their dirty cars and buy new EVs and hybrids. 

How much to scrap a car? No idea. 

How many cars to be scrapped? No idea. 

They’re doing a trial before they decide. 

Even Boris Johnson, who sits on the other side of the political spectrum, is doing more than James Shaw by banning fossil fuel cars by 2030. 

That’s not in James’ plan either. It’s a proposal to maybe do that but no decision yet. 

To be frank, climate change is not high on my list of prioritise personally. I’m not a denier, I just don’t care terribly. 

So, I’m not unhappy about this announcement today, because I feel like I've dodged a cost bullet again. 

But I do wonder what the heck they’ve been up to if it’s taken them this long to pull together a plan that has no plan in it.